Today’s Solutions: November 30, 2021

Environment

Need some good news about the environment? The Optimist Daily is your go-to herald of positive environmental news, highlighting eco-friendly solutions and scientific progress around climate action, circularity, conservation, and more. Learn about everything eco in our Environment section.

Popcorn may be the next sustainable building material

Popcorn is more than just a tasty snack to munch on while at the movies—it may soon be widely used as a natural and eco-friendly alternative to man made home insulation. Scientists at Göttingen University in Germany have discovered that popcorn insulation boards had “excellent thermal Read More...

Ukraine plans to plant one billion trees over the next three years

Back in 2019, Swiss scientists conducted a study that concluded that the most effective way to combat climate change is to plant a trillion trees. According to the study’s calculations, planting at least one trillion trees could sequester nearly 830 billion tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide Read More...

Italian garden installation shows us how much CO2 trees store

Trees are the lungs of our planet—we know that trees are needed because they sequester dangerous CO2 emissions, but do we really know how much we depend on them to clean the air we breathe? We don’t see trees and plants absorbing emissions as we trek through the forest or sit in our gardens, so Read More...

Study: Schools of fish operate like a superorganism

The world under the waves is still a mystery, with 95 percent of oceans yet to be explored. Scientists are always uncovering many new and exciting aspects of this ecosystem; from the importance of fish poop, to new species of whale, and even how fish use sharks like a day spa! Teams from the Read More...

Study brings us one step closer to sustainable pharmaceuticals

On average, the pharmaceutical industry creates 100kg of waste for every 1kg of small-molecule drug synthesized. Making this process highly inefficient and creating a lot of toxic waste. Nitrogen-containing chemicals called primary amines are the sought-after chemicals from these processes, being Read More...

New biodegradable glitter lets you sparkle guilt-free

As sparkly and magical as it is, glitter is actually a form of microplastic, and even products that claim to contain biodegradable glitter rarely actually are. This is a difficult issue to tackle because countries would need to reach an international consensus about regulating it, but fortunately, Read More...

Octopuses, crabs, and lobsters are now considered sentient beings in the UK

In a landmark achievement for animal welfare, octopuses, crabs, and lobsters will be considered sentient beings under UK law. The move follows an independent review led by scientists at the London School of Economics (LSE), which concluded that there is strong evidence these animals can feel pain, Read More...

Farmers partner with NatureLife to protect endangered cranes in Cambodia

Cranes in Cambodia are increasingly threatened by climate change, habitat destruction, and saltwater intrusion, but one group of dedicated citizens is working to ensure their survival: local farmers. Farmers from Koh Chamkar village in southwest Cambodia are working with NatureLife Cambodia to Read More...

The EU proposes law that bans major products linked to deforestation

Last week, the European Commission proposed new legislation to ban the import of many key commodities if companies cannot definitively prove that their products aren’t linked to deforestation. Otherwise, these companies can expect to receive a hefty fine. The commodities under investigation Read More...

US allocates $6.6 million to Midwest Tribes for EV network

The US Department of Energy has approved $6.6 million in funding to create an electric vehicle charging network for Native American Tribes in the Midwest. Awarded to Native Sun Community Power Development and Standing Rock Renewable Energy Power Authority, the funding will be used to purchase Read More...